DUBOIS – On Monday night, members of the DuBois City Council addressed a matter concerning a proposed small cellphone tower.
According to previously-published GANT News reports, Verizon Wireless requested to install the tower at 891 Beaver Dr., and likely onto an existing utility pole.
Under city regulations, Verizon would have to pay $300 for an application fee; $1,000 for a zoning permit fee; and two annual rent payments of $1,000 for use of the right-of-way.
This, a company spokesperson said, would put Verizon in violation of Federal Communications Commission regulations because the FCC limited yearly fees to a maximum of $270.
According to the report, council tabled any action on this request in order for Solicitor Toni Cherry to conduct further research into the FCC regulations.
Cherry said by limiting a yearly fee to $270, there’s low risk of being challenged in court. At her recommendation, council then voted to set the annual rate at $270 for the tower.
The property is currently zoned residential and he requested the zoning be changed to commercial. Dougherty said he would like to open a fitness center at this location.
Cherry advised there was little to no chance of having the property rezoned as commercial. And she said that previous attempts didn’t “end well.”
However, she suggested Dougherty pursue an extension for the non-conforming use of the property. In the past, she said it’s been a furniture store and meat market.
Later in the meeting, Cherry noted that this First Street property’s commercial use pre-dated its residential zoning. She said she felt Dougherty had proposed an even less intrusive use than a store.